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CHICAGO—As the industrial market in the Chicago area begins to pick up speed, some companies have begun to secure lease extensions before vacancy rates fall and rents begin rising again. Exel, for example, an Ohio-based third-party logistics provider, just signed a 359,000-square-foot-lease renewal and expansion at 875 Crossroads in southwest suburban Romeoville. Last month, the firm also opted to lock in a three-year extension for 420,500-square-feet in the Laraway Distribution Center at 1151 East Laraway Road in Joliet. Jeanne Rogers of Arthur J. Rogers & Co., a partner in The CORE Network, represented Exel in both negotiations.

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